J: So when did you first get inspired to create Knock Knock?
Tom: I first created Knock Knock Magazine as my major project in my final semester of TAFE. With a love for all things street art and coupled with my interest in print layout and design it came together naturally. Issue two was spurred from the number of hi-fives the first received, and I brought my sister Ali in to help from there on.
J: You’re on issue three at the moment, how long does it take you to bring each issue together and get it online?
Tom: I planned the magazine to be quarterly, but this’ll be the third in almost 12 months. While it’s kinda always in my thoughts, the actual production and design only takes around two months.
J: At the moment Knock Knock is a free online magazine, do you have any plans to expand it in the future?
Tom: For sure! I’d love to get the magazine on the App Store and have it on every iPad too! Keeping the magazine free, or freeish, is pretty important to the whole idea, especially when we’re talking about street art half the time. The main aim of the magazine is to expose and explore creative minds to the world, so whatever best facilitates this idea is the right way forward. We’d love to be able to offer our contributors an artist’s fee one day – applying for grants is Ali’s next job, and yeah, maybe one day we’ll be able to afford printing. We were just invited by the National Library of Australia to be archived in their online collection which is strange/flattering.
J: You’ve had some really impressive artists featured in issues one and two, where do you find them all?
Tom: The internet is so damn handy. I know a bunch of reputable artists from Sydney and Melbourne who’ve been really generous in making connections for the magazine’s benefit. For international artists, I generally make contact after seeing their work on social networking image sites and just email them; a lot of artists are amazingly supportive and keen to share their stories and ideas in the company of other artists (and without a giant ad next to their work).
J: If you could feature any artist ever of all time who would it be?
Tom: Damn. I dunno, I love so many artists, photographers, musicians and designers it would be impossible to list. However, for the moment – my main obsessions as far as artists go are Herakut, Phlegm, Aryz and Roa. They never cease to amaze my mind. Ali says Zawada, Kusama and Broodthaers.
J: Personally I find your work pretty inspirational, do you have any advice for other up and coming writers?
Tom: Wow, thanks man! I’d be psyched to hear the magazine described as up-n-coming, let alone be asked to offer advice. I guess giving it a go and seeing how it flies is the first step for anything. I had very little confidence in the first issue of Knock Knock getting any exposure, but now topping 10000 online reads I guess I was wrong. Teaming up with a homie who’s keen to fill your blanks always helps too.
J: All your work so far is free, what keeps you going at it?
Tom: I love talking to people, and especially people who make amazing shit. The social networking part of creating the magazine is just as interesting as the ideas I learn and share from the artists; simply seeing people appreciating your work is really encouraging too. I’m big into design as well, so having complete creative control over the project really makes every spread an exciting new challenge, and working with artists with totally rad art makes it easy as pie!
Check out issues 1 and 2 of KNOCK KNOCK at http://issuu.com/blomtrog/docs/knockknockissue1 and the soon to arrive 3rd will be there shortly. Also, for updates and news on the progress of up and coming issues check out the KNOCK KNOCK facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/knockknockmag.
As always, thanks for taking the time Tom and best of luck with issue 3. I’m looking forward to it.